Will storms stop or delay the Indy 500? Here's the latest race day forecast (2024)

The city is entering the home stretch as the the Indy 500 weekend kicks off with Carb Day today. To get ready for the main event,IndyStaris keeping race fans updated with the latest weather forecasts.

Crystal Pettet, meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Indianapolis, said details for Sunday's forecast are still subject to change. Because the weather outlook is rapidly changing, race fans will need to pay attention to the latest forecast.

Be prepared:How to stay informed in case of severe weather during Indy 500 weekend

Here's what's in the forecast Indy 500 weekend as of today:

What will weather be like for the Indy 500?

Gates open Sunday for the Big Race at 6 a.m., and the green flag starting the race waves at 12:45 p.m. Here's a breakdown of the day's forecast:

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There are increasing chances of rain and thunderstorms, Pettet said, with a wave coming through in the late morning to early afternoon and chances of severe thunderstorms increasing in the afternoon.

The NWS forecast as of Friday gives a 40% chance of rain and thunderstorms before 2 p.m. and an 80% chance after 2 p.m. Pettet said those numbers will likely change, and meteorologists currently are working in 6-hour time intervals, but those will become more granular closer to the race.

"At the moment, the potential for severe thunderstorms look significant for Sunday afternoon and evening," Pettet said Friday morning.

2024 Indy 500 weather:Should you evacuate the grandstands? What fans can expect if severe weather hits

The Weather Underground's current forecast for Sunday predicts thunderstorms beginning at 11 a.m. and lasting throughout the day. The forecasters there say severe thunderstorms are expected and temperatures will be around 76 degrees with an 80% chance of rain.

AccuWeather is calling for a 97% chance of rain on Race Day with a 92% probability of thunderstorms. Thunderstorms could be strong and can bring flooding downpours, hail, damaging wind gusts and tornadoes.

Will storms stop or delay the Indy 500? Here's the latest race day forecast (1)

Everything Indy 500: IndyStar's full coverage for this year's race

Will the Indy 500 be delayed or postponed?

Regardless of grim weather outlooks, IMS President Doug Boles said he's 99.9% sure there will be no announcements about postponements or delays prior to Sunday.

The Indy 500 has had onlythree complete postponements due to rainy weathersince 1915, according to the IMS website.

The last time rain interfered with the big race was in 2007, when drivers were only able to finish 166 laps after having to stop twice from the weather.

Drivers mustfinish at least 101 lapsfor the race to be official, according to a 2019 IndyStar article.

Any postponement, either full or partial, will be made up the next day.

Potential postponements:What's the latest on the Indy 500 blackout? Will the race be delayed by weather?

What is the weather forecast for Memorial Day if there's a delay?

The NWS in Indy gives Monday a 40% chance of showers and thunderstorms. Skies could be mostly sunny with a high near 75 degrees.

The Weather Underground forecast shows scattered thunderstorms in the morning with partly cloudy skies later in the day. Chances of rain are about 40% and temperatures will be in the mid-70s.

AccuWeather says Memorial Day will see a thunderstorm in areas in the morning with mostly cloudy skies. There's a 40% chance of rain and temperatures will hit 75 degrees.

What will weather be like for Carb Day?

It's Carb Day today and NWS is predicting mostly sunny skies with a high near 84 degrees. Scattered rain and thunderstorms could roll in mainly after 8 p.m. with a chance of precipitation at 40%.

The Weather Underground forecast for today shows some clouds and possibly an isolated thunderstorm in the afternoon. Chances of rain are 30% with temperatures nearing a high of 85 degrees.

AccuWeather's forecast for Carb Day shows a 40% chance of rain. It will be very warm and humid with times of clouds and sun and a thunderstorm late this afternoon.

Here are the grid positions for the 108th running of the Indianapolis 500

What will weather be like for Legends Day?

Tomorrow is Legends Day and the NWS is currently calling for isolated showers before 2 p.m. Skies will be mostly cloudy then gradually becoming sunny with the chance of rain at only 20%. High temps will be around 82 degrees.

Weather Underground is calling for scattered thunderstorms on Saturday morning, then becoming mostly sunny later in the day. Temperatures will be near 82 degrees with a 50% chance of rain.

The AccuWeather forecast shows a 25% chance of rains for Legends Day with warm and sunny conditions and highs near 82 degrees.

Indy 500 weather history

IndyStar analyzed 20 years of historic data from Weather Underground for May 26, this year's Race Day.

Daily temperatures averaged in the high 60s and it rained only 5 days out of the last 20 since 2004. Precipitation totals on rainy days were light, with the highest on record at only one-tenth of an inch.

On previous race days not always falling on May 26, temperatures varied wildly from a high of 92 degrees in 1937 and a low at 37 degrees in 1947, according to the National Weather Service.

The most rain fell on May 30, 2004, when Race Day was inundated with nearly 4 inches of precipitation.

Nat Newell contributed to this report.

Karl Schneider is an IndyStar environmentreporter. You can reach him at karl.schneider@indystar.com.Follow him on Twitter@karlstartswithk

IndyStar's environmental reporting project is made possible through the generous support of the nonprofit Nina Mason Pulliam Charitable Trust.

Will storms stop or delay the Indy 500? Here's the latest race day forecast (2024)


Is the 2024 Indy 500 delayed? ›

The 108th Indianapolis 500 is underway after a four-hour delay due to stormy weather. There are plenty of storylines surrounding this race, including Kyle Larson's botched attempt to run the famed "Double" after missing his start for NASCAR's co*ke 600.

How long does the Indy 500 delay? ›

INDIANAPOLIS -- The Indianapolis 500 started Sunday after a rain delay of four hours with NASCAR star Kyle Larson still at the track and in the race.

Is the Indy 500 blackout in Indianapolis? ›

Race fans are grateful. Due to the delay and weather, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is lifting the local media blackout, which has not happened since the height of the pandemic in 2021. Race fans took to social media to share their thoughts.

What happens to Indy 500 if it rains? ›

If the rain persists, or the window to run the race does not last long enough, the entire 200-lap race would be run Monday.

Is the Indy 500 finished? ›

Josef Newgarden used a scintillating last-lap pass to win the Indianapolis 500 on Sunday for the second consecutive year in a race that started four hours late due to extreme weather. “I'm just so proud of the team. They crushed it.

What time will the Indy 500 end? ›

The race will end by 8:15 p.m., even if it is short of 200 laps: "In agreement with local law enforcement, to ensure race fans are able to leave and return home safely tonight."

What was the worst year for the Indy 500? ›

Owing to the tragic circ*mstances, relentless weather problems, rain-shortened finish, and overall glum mood during the month, the 1973 race is widely considered the worst year for the running of the Indianapolis 500.

What time does the 2024 Indy 500 start? ›

How and when to watch the Indy 500. The 2024 Indy 500 will be held on Sunday, May 26, 2024. The Indianapolis 500 green flag drops at 12:45 p.m. ET (9:45 a.m. PT).

Why isn't Kyle Larson in the Indy 500? ›

INDIANAPOLIS -- Kyle Larson was determined to complete the Indianapolis 500 and the Coca-Cola 600 on Sunday, but weather got in the way. Storms swept through Indianapolis Motor Speedway and delayed the start of the race there, ruining Larson's chance at finishing all 1,100 miles in a single day.

Has there ever been a black driver in the Indy 500? ›

William Theodore Ribbs Jr. (born January 3, 1955) is a retired American race car driver, racing owner, and sport shooter known for being the first African-American man to have tested a Formula One car (he did so in 1986) and to compete in the Indianapolis 500 (tested in 1985, raced in 1991 and 1993).

Can you bring alcohol into the Indy 500? ›

The IMS allows spectators to bring their own beer to the race. They do have rules about carry in beverages and coolers. From the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Spectator Regulations: Coolers are permitted but size is restricted to no larger than 18 inches by 14 inches by 14 inches; coolers may be hard- or soft-sided.

How to get around Indy 500 blackout? ›

The Indianapolis 500 local TV blackout is lifted with the delayed start − for area NBC affiliates and on Peaco*ck − according to Boles.

Who did not drink milk at Indy 500? ›

Emerson Fittipaldi's bold stand against milk at Indy 500 Victory Lane. Among the long list of iconic drivers who embraced the tradition, one name stands out as an exception-Emerson Fittipaldi. In 1993, the Brazilian driver found himself in Victory Lane after an impressive performance.

Has it ever snowed during the Indy 500? ›

Speaking of cold – 1989 was a year that many fans and drivers won't likely forget. It was the year for the latest snow reported in Indianapolis.

Why do they dump milk at the Indy 500? ›

The Milk Tradition

“Winners Drink Milk” is considered one of the most beloved phrases and traditions in Indiana and all of sports. The tradition started at the Indianapolis 500® by driver Louis Meyer simply requesting buttermilk to quench his thirst after the 1936 race.

Why did Indy 500 start late? ›

The start of the race was delayed four hours by rain and it ruined NASCAR star Kyle Larson's chance to run "The Double." The delay in Indy made him miss the start of the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Who are the drivers in the 2024 Indy 500? ›

Confirmed entries
Juncos Hollinger RacingChevroletAgustín Canapino
Meyer Shank Racing with Curb-AgajanianHondaHélio Castroneves
Meyer Shank RacingFelix Rosenqvist
Tom Blomqvist R
37 more rows

What year was the Indy 500 rained out? ›

In 1997, the Indy 500 was rained out. It continued on Memorial Day, but was stopped after 15 laps.


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